An excellent post from author Steven Pressfield about the painful, self-marketing aspect of being a writer. It’s relevant for all independent professionals.
For the past few months I’ve been working full-time promoting my just-published novel,
A Man at Arms, and I have to tell you … I am waaaay out of my comfort zone.
But, Steven offers an alternative mindset to the usual reluctance we feel.
Here’s how I feel about it. I don’t see it as selfish (though no doubt there are self-interested elements in there.) For me, it’s about fidelity to the book and, especially, to the characters.
It’s about fidelity to the work.
If you do good work, it deserves to be shared.
Read the rest, here.
Steven, of course, wrote The War of Art, an essential guide to getting things done. I’ve just replaced my copy. He also coined the mantra,
Put your ass where your heart wants to be.
Andreas Rønningen on Unsplash
Execupundit’s Michael Wade has started a new series of posts on Interesting Websites.
He had me from the beginning with a list brings together Niall Ferguson, Steven Pinker, Keith Richards and Van Morrison.
Find them all at
Tim Mossholder on Unsplash
Donald Robertson, author of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor (and many other books), posts a list of forthcoming Stoicism events.
The first is the Marcus Aurelius Anniversary conference, in honour of Marcus’ 1,900th birthday.
The events are virtual, which removes another excuse for not attending. I also see that recording will be available later for donating attendees.
More information, here.
A salient reminder of where to focus…
Your career. What are you doing this week to make it sustainable, enjoyable and still viable in 2 years from now? Your wellness. How much are you simply moving? What’s the quality of your nutrition? Sleeping sufficient? Taking some time out? …
Read the rest, here.
Then, possibly, read
Nicholas’ debut novel, Meet Molly. More here.
Anastasia Petrova on Unsplash
Ground down by lockdown? You could look at this as the ultimate Stoic test and attempt to live by the maxim:
It isn’t the things themselves that disturb people, but the judgements that they form about them.”
In other words, like it or not, how we respond to things we can’t control is a choice. Nicholas Bate, as ever, has wise and pithy words,
here and here and here…
Covid Career Goals, 7
1. To be measured
by the value you create not just the time you put in.
To be constantly learning. Especially through mistakes.
Luca Bravo on Unsplash
Kurt Harden at Cultural Offering has Anton Chekhov’s eight qualities of cultured people…
They have no shallow vanity. They do not care for such false diamonds as knowing celebrities, shaking hands with …
Well worth studying and cultivating.
Read the rest, here.
‘I wish it need not have happened in my time,’ said Frodo. ‘So do I,’ said Gandalf, ‘and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.’“
Steve Layman brings us sound advice from another place and time. He also suggests a few simple rules for everyday life.
Michael Wade shares
a moment of tranquillity…
…along with style, beauty,
art and advice.
Nicholas Bate provides pithy advice for better living (always) …
How to get better at anything, 22 1. Read the best book on the subject by the best expert. 2, Practise the skill daily. 3. Fill a notebook with key points, learnings and tips on the subject. 4. Read that notebook (3) daily. 5. Create a plan of incremental improvement. 6. …
I am in awe of those who produce thoughtful, thought-provoking and inspiring material with such relentless regularity.
More inspiration to be found at
Cultural Offering, and with Patrick Rhone, and with Seth Godin ( this particularly caught my eye) and many, many other places. Follow the links, hat-tips and references and let your mind wander. Even if your body can’t.
Martin Schachinger on Unsplash
It was common to refer to philosophy itself as a medicine or therapy (
therapeia) for the psyche, the soul or mind.
interesting article from Donald Robertson (cognitive psychotherapist and author of How to Think Like a Roman Emperor) on Marcus Aurelius, Stoicism and the roots of cognitive behavioural therapy: Marcus Aurelius in Therapy. Continue reading
“Stoicism and psychotherapy – @DonJRobertson”
We find ourselves in vexed and vexatious times. Let it go.
Stop fretting and stressing over things you can’t control.
It isn’t the things themselves that disturb people, but the judgements that they form about them. Epictetus (c.50 – 135), Handbook (5)
“Let it go – ancient advice for modern times”
Execupundit’s Michael Wade shares some wise words:
You may not have the control to lengthen your life, but you can do much to deepen it. Frank Sonnenberg
Marie Bellando-Mitjans on Unsplash